This article, Desperate Stand: Averian Appears!, is property of Kenji-Taichō. Permission is required to alter its content.

This article, Desperate Stand: Averian Appears!, is property of Rozeluxe.

It was late and the setting sun painted the sky a multitude of shades ranging from red and yellow all the way through orange. Kenji, with that beautiful scene at his back, walked down an old dirt trodden track he'd found ages ago nestled at least ten miles away from the nearest civilization. Fields of green surrounded him on either side and birds tweeted happily in the few trees that dotted the landscape. And the wind was pleasant and warm, which made him happy. But it was none of those peaceful things that made Kenji stop and smile. He sensed something...the spiritual energy of a friend he hadn't seen for a while...and by all coincidence he was walking towards him.

"Yo? Been some time huh? How have you been since the last time me and the gang saw you?" Van smiled as he appeared seemingly from the shadows.

Kenji gave his normal two finger salute. "Van? Thought it was you. Can't complain. Well, there is the Arrancar that's lookin' to kick my head in, but I did fry his little bro, but apart from that, I've never been better. The rest of the gang's pretty good. Kazuma never stops talkin' about Anna and Kusaka wants to face off against ya, but can't say I blame him. How's life been treatin' ya anywho, Van?" He asked casually.

Van laughed as he went to sit down by his friend's feet "Kazuma still has that crush huh? Tell him he can fight me for her. And let Kusaka know that any of us are ready to take him on all he has to do is ask. The gang's all out on vacation at the moment so I'm not too bad off." He looked up at his tall friend "Man it seems like just a week ago that I met you but, at the same time its like I've known you forever."

Kenji nodded agreement and leaned against a wall of spiritual energy. "Yeah, after that battle, I can't say I blame ya, 'cause I fell the same buddy...That was a fun day." He stretched his right arm. "Vacation, eh? Sounds nice. I sneaked off, 'cause I couldn't hack another session of clothes shoppin' with Ino. I love the girl and all, but there's a limit. Kazuma's with her, someone help him and Kusaka's off hollow huntin'. That left me all lonely, but I guess there's someone upstairs who's got a sense of humor. How's the mastery of the hollow goin' for ya?"

Van was already wearing his hollow mask lightly napping. "Oh you say something? Me and Yukimura....we get along for the most part. There are times he tries to gain dominance but my good ol' zanpakuto keeps him in check." Van removed his mask looking at Kenji. There were tears of joy running down his face "Finally someone understands me when it comes to females. Anna is strong and beautiful...with an extra helping of scary to boot. Its like being led around on a chain. Anyway. So how is Kazuma coming along?" Van chuckled wildly.

"Ino's the same...only she's strong enough to floor me and ain't afraid to do it, either. Kazuma's doin' alright, and he's found a way to piss us all off. He can control vines and tickles our damn feet at night and bolts before we can catch him." He smiled at that and mentally imaged himself strangling Kazuma with his own vines. Walking off and drawing his zanpakuto, Kenji turned. "Now, now, I can't have ya fallin' asleep on me...or cryin' either. C'mon, we never got to finish our last match." Excitement laced his voice and he bounced on the spot like a big kid.

Van laughed as he stood. "I should've known. What would a day like this be if we didn't tear up the environment a bit? You sure you're ready for this though? I've been practicing and I came up with some new moves that you won't be quite ready for I'm guessing." Van shunpo'd near Kenji landing a tap on his shoulder "First move is yours. Heh"

"Ohhh, aren't you kind." Kenji brought his katana round in a flashing arc, Van leaping back to avoid it. "Nice reflexes. about this?" Spiritual energy formed in front of Kenji. "My mentors used to use this against me and it was a royal pain." With a flick of his finger, Kenji sent hardened "bullets" of spiritual energy quickly toward Van. "Don't misjudge. They're harder than ya'd think."

"Oh? You have things up your sleeve as well do you?" Van joked. He tried to dodge the bullets coming for him but was still hit on his side and right leg. Whoa! If those were to hit full on....things would've gotten pretty nasty really fast. "That all you got Kenji!?" Van charged in using a fencing motion creating seemingly multiple blades with an illusion.

Kenji arched an eyebrow and began dodging quickly, trying his best to see Van's sword. "I seen this kinda thing in a film the other day. The guy didn't make it! Okay, time to focus. Ouch, my damn shoulder!" He recieved a wound on his left shoulder and right rib before he finally caught Van's wrist. "Got ya! That's a pretty nice move, there Van. Guess you were trainin'." With a turning motion, Kenji spun Van and threw him into the air. "Try this one." Kenji fired off a wave of lightning energy as a tester. He was curious after all.

"Heh you aren't so bad yourself!" Don't focus on the lightning. "Heh. There's always the obvious choice. Wreak Havoc.....Tsuyakeshi Hanabira!" Van crystallized the wave of lightning, kicking it back at Kenji. "Don't think that'll work so well on me!" Van was starting to get visibly angry from the sight of lightning.

Kenji leapt into the air and grinned. "That little trick was done by your hollow. I was hopin' you wouldn't remember it, but it don't matter. I've got more than Aoi Inazuma in my arsenal after all." His eyes turned a slight crimson hue. "I can use a little of Kyo's power. He's the guy sealed in my brain, if you're wonderin', wthout releasin' the actual blade. It ain't a lot, but every little helps!" Kenji flashed to Van's back, but he didn't aim for the spot that would seal his powers. "Senka." Was all he said.

"I did say that I have been communicating with my hollow pal right? What did you expect if for me not to learn some tricks. I never really thought about lightning itself having mass. And as for Kyo. So you're saying that you're a bit crazy?" Van laughed as he swung behind him in attempt to hit Kenji. Kenji ducked while kicking Van down toward the ground. "Heh. Not bad at all. Let's see you handle this move. Bloom...Kesshō Tōdai." Van created six clones around him. Their voices rung in unison "Try us on for size."

Kenji hung his head in exasperation. "Six plus one makes seven Van's? One's bad enough! And what ya mean crazy!? He's sealed there. Not my choice, but c'mon. We're all a little crazy! I'd have to be to try this...Hado #71: Kouu Kakuzen Kyousha!" A lance of spiritual energy shot from Kenji's hand, gaining speed as it travelled, forcing two of the clones to seperate from the group. Donning his mask for a split second to gain the needed speed, Kenji cut them in two before removing it again. Turning, he faced the other five. "I'd say this isn't fair, but alls fair in conflict. Just my luck..."

"Heh. You found out the weakness to the clones..stupid kido!" Van stopped and smiled "All's fair correct well's this?" Van and his clones donned their hollow masks in unison. "Time to take charge! Bloom...Kesshō Yūdaina Shinrin!" Van(s) stuck their swords into the ground each creating a crystal forest that continued to grow toward their target in an attempt to encase Kenji in a tower of pain.

"Ahhhh!!" He ran comically as crystals sprouted from the ground. "Damnable clones! Bakudo #26 Kyokko!" His presence vanished completely. Bidding his time and waiting on an opening, Kenji finally burst from the curved light used to conceal him. "Sky break free and guide my spirit. Gather your form and seal the moon! Hado #86: Tentai Hi!" Blue fireballs flew out to strike the incoming crystal, hitting two clones in the process. "Shouldn't have said Kido was there weakness...!" Kenji tapped Kyo's strength to the max without releasing him and charged ahead, both sealed zanpakuto drew back for a strike!

"Heh. You forget Kenji I told you I learned tricks. Since when did you fall for such cheap lures? Oh well..shatter!" One of Van's remaining clones shattered into multiple shards. He then started charging ceros in his remaining three hands. "Bloom...Kesshō Tōken!" The shards in the air reformed into a multitude of sharp daggers all floating above and below Kenji. "I've been training since we last fought. Don't think such reckless acts can be used so easily!" Van then fired his ceros at Kenji knowing one way or another he was going to do some damage.

Kenji's mouth near dropped! The daggers converged on him before the Cero's were fired, so he had time. His arm moved in a blur, slicing the crystal at is came. But the Cero's were a different thing completely. All three struck him and would've ended him had he not fired his own hasty Cero at the last second. Falling to the ground in a cloud of smoke, Kenji opened his palm as he fell. "Don't...go to sleep! Gran Rey Cero!" The violet colored blast flew towards Van at a tremendous pace, but Kenji hit the floor with a thud, completely covered in smoke.

"What the FRICK!!" Van flew back into the trees. He tried using his blade to slow himself down but to no avail. "Fine then I have one of my own so why don't you chew on this!" Van stuck his blade in a tree, then he put together his four arms forming a turquoise colored energy; suddenly his voice rang out "Gran Rey Cero!!"

Kenji dashed from the smoke, a crimson cero leaving his hand! But Van's Gran Rey Cero tore through it like a hot knife through butter...and Kenji evaporated in a fantastic display of electric sparks as the blast struck. That was when the real Kenji flashed to Van's side and caught him by the throat! "When did you start fallin' for such cheap lures?" He said with a grin, the enjoyment of battle filling his body, before spinning and throwing Van down toward the ground. Two quick Bala blasts left his fist as Van fell. Looking to the side, Kenji drew Van's sword from the tree and threw it down beside him. "Let's continue."

Van's voiced echoed from beside Kenji "Cheap lures huh? Maybe you should be the one paying attention." The Van Kenji attacked shattered into shards from the bala blasts. "Still gotta get my blade back though." Van rushed past Kenji grabbing his katana. "Don't take me so lightly. There's still another few tricks up my sleeve." Whew! Good thing I kept one of those in reserve or else that would've ended badly.

Kenji shook his head though as he turned. "I'm not takin' you lightly, Van. Trust me, I know better, 'cause I've seen ya fight." With a grin, he shunpo'd into the steps for the quick, shredding strikes of Saidanodori and was greatly surprised when Van dodged it. "Heh, the only one who's ever dodged that was Kusaka..." This time he went forward extremely quickly, intending to use Kumo o setsudan to take Van's head off!

"What the!?" Van tried to dodge but was unable to receiving a slash across his stomach and losing an arm. "Tch. What was that?" Van tried to recover by grabbing one of Kenji's legs but, Kenji responded with grabbing Van's leg tossing him to th ground with a thud. "This isn't going to end well for me...just kidding!' Van launched a barrage of crystal shards back at Kenji in an attempt to cause confusion.

Dodging the bulk of them took difficulty, but the few at the back of the stream caught Kenji in the chest, arms and legs and made him cough blood through the teeth of his mask. He couldn't help but laugh though. "That was the sword skills Kyo taught me, and after the fight, I'll happily teach you them. But...we're pretty much even! Van, this fight is gonna be a good one!" Propelling himself off solidified air, Kenji closed on Van, katana blade raised!

"Even?. I don't think you released everything you have in you at the moment. You have something left up your sleeve, I just know it. But as for the teachings...sure I don't see a reason why we shouldn't have that in our day. Not like anything else is going on since everyone else is off on their little adventures" Van surged toward Kenji locking blades with his friend smiling beneath his mask.

Sparks flew as their blades clashed! Both never looked like backing down, wills locked as surely as their blades. "I thought this day was gonna be a borin' one with everyone away. But fate has a way of throwin' somethin' good a guy's way!" Both blades glowed brightly as both fighters repelled the other. Landing atop a small rock, Kenji charged a Cero. "You need to start givin' yourself some credit, Van." Kenji said truthfully.

"Credit? Ha! I'd rather not. It would be as if the mighty phoenix took time to admire its beauty every chance it had. I prefer modesty over anything else." Van stuck his sword onto the ground "Bloom...Kesshō Keimusho! " A crystal trail appeared closing in to encase the rock Kenji was on in crystal. Meanwhile Van started charging ceros in his free hands. "Kenji...we have to have a tourney battle sometime. If everyone on your team is as good as you then I don't doubt that we'll all have a good time. This sparring session is too good to not let the others know about."

Leaping to avoid the crystal trail, Kenji fired off his Cero, at the last second changing it to Gran Rey form to match and cancel out Van's multiple shot variety. "Haha! I think that would make Kusaka's day alright, and Kazuma wouldn't mind either!" Flipping to land lightly on his feet, Kenji turned to stare Van down. "But I'd be up for that alright! You wanna know something? I've fought a Royal Guardsmen by the name of Dastan. Our battle came down to the wire...but I think if you were to fight him now, you'd beat him." There wasn't a hint of doubt to be found in Kenji's tone. He meant every word...

"I'll be sure to let the others on my end know about it. I think they would be thrilled to fight your team and friends." Van launched two crystal spears at Kenji then formed a disc he hopped on intending to slash Kenji with it or his blade. "As for this Dastan guy. I would be thrilled to fight him. If he's anything like you then I know I would enjoy it." Van smiled as he jumped off the disc coming from above Kenji thrusting his blade.

Kenji turned and moved backwards, Van's blade running down his chest and drawing blood while he split the crystal disc clean in two. Putting his hand on solidified air, Kenji spun and kicked Van in the stomach. "Dastan was powerful, but I was motivated. The guy's been tryin' to kill me since I was an infant. As for the team brawl? You're on, Van!" Descending to the ground, Kenji looked up. "Sprinkled on the bones of the beast! Sharp tower, red crystal, steel ring. Move and become the wind, stop and become the calm. The sound of warring spears fills the empty castle! Hado 63: Raikōhō!" The yellow blast of electrical energy surged from Kenji's hand.

"So I'm guessing this guy is evil then? Wow! I totally had the wrong idea about him." Van laughed as he looked up and suddenly stopped laughing as he noticed the kido spell flying toward him. Van tried to create a crystal shield but, the spell hit him right before the shield finished forming. "GUAH!!!!" Van fell to the ground looking up at Kenji with hatred in his eyes. "You bastard! I won't forgive some demon like you!! That humiliation you gave me in front of everyone!" Van started hurling crystal spikes at Kenji in a blinded rage.

Kenji's arms moved in a blur, striking and cutting away the crystal as it came to him. When the barrage ended, he regarded Van coolly. "He's evil all right, but whoever it is you're thinkin' of, it sure as hell ain't me. 'Cause I haven't know ya that long." He said calmly. Instead of going for the counter, Kenji abandoned attack or defense and stood completely still. "Now, who's this guy who humiliated you?" He asked plainly.

"I know it's you! You can't fool me with your petty disguises Luka! I'll make you pay! Enough talk! Time for you to die! HAHAHAHAHA!!!" Van surged forward punching Kenji in the gut with a crystal encased fist. "Give up yet? How does it feel now to have the pain of humiliation running through your body?" Van started creating a crystal cross spear aiming it at Kenji. "Time for you to go bye bye Luka!!"

Raising his head to look at Van, Kenji grabbed the spear and smashed it through sheer spiritual energy, his eyes flashing crimson as Kyo lent him power. "Luka? Feel my spiritual energy, Van. Do I even feel anything like this Luka guy?" Placing the hand that pulzerized the spear, Kenji placed it on Van's shoulder, abandoning defence completely. "I'm not Luka. Would this Luka guy leave himself completely open like this?" He asked. "Now, come back to your senses."

Van's mask melted away. "Sorry...Kenji. There are some things that happened in the past that I've yet to get over. I'm still learning to cope with it" Van sheathed his sword. "Let's take a little break. I think we both could use the rest right?" Van laughed as he sat down on the ground to breath. "Sorry again about getting all worked up like that."

Kenji removed his own mask and landed lightly beside his friend. "No worries, Van. There's some thing's that happen that we just can't control." Sheathing his zanpakuto, Kenji dropped down to sit beside Van. "There are things that happen in everyone's past. Kusaka told me once that everyone can be likened to the moon. They've got a side they don't show to anyone." As he spoke, he couldn't help but kick the feeling that something bad was about to happen...

However, as the two sat and rested, a Garganta opened in the sky. A figure with long, black hair and casual clothing consisiting of a black jacket, a white undershirt and black jeans stepped out, looking down directly on a small farming home. With his outstretched hand, he reduced that home to rubble with a single, crimson coloured Cero that formed a large crater in the ground!

Van sighed as he felt the force from that blast. "I'm guessing that's no one on our side?" He said sarcastically "Just when I thought I could get a break again. Oh well I don't mind. It would get boring if things happen like they were supposed to all the time."

Kenji shrugged as he rose. "I hear ya..." He and Van flashed as one to appear a decent distance from the mysterious arrival. "Oh lovely." Kenji said hanging his head. "An Arrancar. Van, have ya ever fought one? These guys are a royal pain in the backside." There was no love, only scourn in Kenji's tone.

The figure turned to regard both individuals, his face curling into a smile as he suddenly shot forward and stuck his zanpakuto through Kenji's shoulder before spin kicking him into the ground below! "Hmmm? You blocked it at the last second with your arm? Now, what about you?" He appeared behind Van, blade raised! "I require nourishment for my soul!"

"Yea I've fac-" Van stopped as he saw Kenji injured and noticed the Arrancar behind him. "Holy sh!t where di-" Van was struck down the chest by the arrancar. Falling he looked at the deep wound on his chest What is this guy? Its like he's past the level of anything I've went against before.

Kenji stopped Van from falling further with a kido net before appearing beside him. "What the hell just happened!? I could barely follow him! Van, you okay?" Kenji was sent trailing backwards though with a single strike, the Arrancar with a sadistic grin on his face!

"You're pathetic!" He hissed. "I'll tell you my name, so that you can quake in fear. Averian!" Pushing Kenji back with a mere flick of his wrist, Averian turned to look at Van. "Vanish." Was all he said as a Cero formed in his hand.

Van's eyes widened as he saw the approaching Cero. "Not today mister." Van lowered his spiritual energy falling to the ground just in time to avoid being hit. "Wreak Havoc.....Tsuyakeshi Hanabira!" Van launched two crystal spires at Averian. "Chew on this!"

Lightning energy surrounded the crystal and when it struck Averian, Kenji appeared beside Van, hand gripping his wounded shoulder. "Averian, eh?" Kenji summoned his mask with a ripping motion. "We'll need to work together, here, or we're both dead. You saw how fast he watch yourself, Van. Cover me!" Kenji released a potent blast of electrical energy towards the area Averian was in.

But Averian burst from the smoke cloud and prepared to take Kenji's head off with a single strike, yellow eyes flashing evil intentions. "You both will die and become a part of me!"

Van laughed "If we became a 'part' of you I think you would lose yourself to our personalities. You seem kind do you put it nicely...idiotic?" Van joked obviously trying to bait Averian. He then created a hail storm of bladed snowflake crystals causing them to raid down upon Averian and preventing his charge toward Kenji.

Using Van's diversion, Kenji flashed to his friends side and grinned as the snowflakes sliced Averian's skin. "Walls of ironsand, a priestly pagoda, glowing ironclad fireflies. Standing upright, silent to the end. Bakudo 75: Gochūtekkan!" Six iron pillars landed on top of Averian and slammed him into the ground. "Disappear! Tryin' to make us a part of you. Ye lord! Mask of flesh and bone, flutter of wings, ye who bears the name of Man! Truth and temperance, upon this sinless wall of dreams unleash but slightly the wrath of your claws. Hado 33: Sōkatsui!" The exertion, coupled with his battle with Van, left him winded. "How's that!?"

Van looked on as the smoke cleared. "No way...."

Averian was there still breathing looking up at the two before vanishing from sight. He reappeared grabbing Van by the neck tossing him to the ground before launching a cero in his direction. "Your turn boy!" Averian glared as he spoke to Kenji.

"Kyo, lend me your power!" The extra energy gave Kenji the boost he needed to appear between Van and the Cero and pull him to safety, the Cero brushing his shoulder. Turning his gaze on Averian, Kenji's eyes flashed a mixture of hollowfied yellow and crimson. "This is insane! He got hit with all that and he isn't even scratched! Van...this could get ugly, pal."

Averian looked at both as he laughed wickedly. "Even with you both mimicking hollows, you are still pathetic. You have no chanve of victory, so resign yourselves! You are both destined to becoming my zanpakuto's next meal." He shot forward with a Sonido so fast, both Shinigami could barely follow it!

"Kenji. Let me down over there. There's something I want to try. I'm gonna need a bit of room and some time." Van managed to cough up after being choked. He then created a flock of birds from crystal and launched them at Averian "Suck on this!"

Using the crystal as a diversion, Kenji did as he was told and set Van down out of the way. "I'll buy you some time, but don't take too long, eh? I'd prefer to get out of this battle with all my body parts intact." Taking to the sky, Kenji drew on Kyo's energy. "Let's go!"

Averian cut through the crystal finally, a blade of pure energy shooting from his free hand as he blocked Kenji's strike! "Blocking it means it's dangerous." Kenji remarked calmly. "Don't group me with the likes of you!" Averian barked, spinning to repel Kenji, cutting his chest as whipped his zanpakuto through the air. "You and your friend will fall. So why delay the inevitable?" Without a battle pose, Averian fired off a powerful Cero!

Van took a deep breath. He watched as Kenji charged Averian trying to gather his thoughts. "Ok...I'm ready. Let's see if this works." Van spiritual pressure started rising rapidly "Ride, Nana Warukyūre!" A bright light enveloped the area cutting off Averian's cero and the sounds of chariots could be heard as the light became brighter. The light dissapated showing Van in his new state. "Averian! Its time for you to leave!" Van vanished into what seemed like a dimensional slip appearing next Kenji. "Let's do this right."

Looking at Van's new state, Kenji couldn't help but smile. "I thought you had somethin' up your sleeve. Your energies awesome, man! I'm not gonna pretend I know what that is, but I'm not complain' right now!" Kenji lowered his head, white spiritual energy with a dark blue outline surrounded him, eyes flashing hollowfied crimson when he raised it again to stare Averian down. "Van, don't give him a chance to release his zanpakuto. You ready, pal?"

Arching an eyebrow at the two Shinigami before him, Averian actually smiled. "Your powers will be a fine addition to my arsenal! Now die! My zanpakuto wishes to bathe in your blood! Come Shinigami, meet your end." He spread his arms wide and laughed like a madman.

Van smiled "Heh. Heh. Sorry pal. I explain this later on. As I told you I learned some new tricks. But as for this guy. Let him release? I plan on settling this here and now! Hrist!" Van's body started vanish into flame before appearing behind Averian "Time for a bit of revenge." Van slashed downward at Averian's arm.

The Stand!Edit

Kenji appeared using a variation of Senka and blocked Averian's attempted counter-stroke, Van's sword tearing a wound halfway through the Arrancar's Hierro! Averian leapt back with a hasty Sonido, raising his zanpakuto as spiritual energy swirled around him!

"Yeah right!" A white energy javelin formed in Kenji's left hand. "Kami no sabaki! (Divine Judgement)" The javelin lodged itself in Averian's left shoulder before collapsing inwards to cause a sizable explosion. "How'd ya like us now, eh!? Van, its time to turn this fight around."

Van smiled at the sight of his friend's talents."You always manage to keep up." Van gained a serious look as he turned watching Averian still speaking to Kenji. "I know what you mean. I'm tired of his presence. His very existance is an annoyance." Van's tails started forming around him in a circle. "Mekura." A silver colored beam shot out from the tip of each of his tails. "Averian..I want you in a grave."

The blast smacked Averian directly, kicking up a smoke cloud that hid him from view. "Cursed Shinigami!" A wide Cero burst from the smoke, but both fighters dodged it easily.

"Friends should be skilled to keep each other sharp. Besides, I can't exactly let you beat me, can I?" Kenji said calmly as he jumped clear of the Cero. Kenji's eye caught Van's and he nodded, using Kido to create a smokescreen. A single lightning clone burst through the shroud, heading straight towards Averian with a ball of lightning in his hand!

"Beat you? I'll do more than that. I'll leave you in th dust if you aren't careful. Heh. Heh." Van turned his attention back to Averian "Geirdriful!" He formed a myriad of snakes from his body and shapped it into a cannon-like object firing off a projectile of energy at intense speeds.

"Oh ho, is that a challenge I'm hearin'?" Kenji said with a large grin. "But dust might be a problem. I'm a stubborn guy afterall." Kenji loosed a Gran Rey Cero, attempting to crush Averian alongside Van's Geirdriful.

Standing completely still, Averian sheathed his sword and outstretched both arms, opening his palms as though telling someone to stop. "Disappear!" Releasing two Gran Rey Cero's, one from each hand, Averian cancelled out the blasts before clicking his fingers. "Spatial Prison." Two black circles formed beneath Kenji and Van, preventing them from moving as Averian moved to slice each deeply across the back!

"Guah!' Van fell foward heavily wounded. "Heh. Bastard making me use this. Skuld!" Van molted his fur and skin revealing a new body slowly from his mouth. Van turned to look back at Averian "Heh. Is that all you have? That's means nothing to me!' Van charged toward Averian with his tails outstretched in front of him in an attempt to pierce the arrancar.

Kenji fell forward, his hollowfication slowly reparing the damage done. When the wound healed, he looked up to see Van charging Averian head-on, his tails stabbing quickly. "Heh, that form is good." Using Senka, Kenji appeared behind Averian with every intention of sealing away his powers and leaving him defenceless!

It didn't quite work out though. "Foolish Shinigami." Averian cast aside his clothing before his entire body morphed into that of a massive creature with a large, long tail that batted Kenji aside like a fly at a BBQ before firing a Cero from the tip to hit him directly. With a deafening roar, he opened his mouth and released another potent Cero at the incoming Van!

Van cried out "Sigrund!" he was hit by Averian's Cero but smiled as he saw that his snake wall protected Kenji just in time. "Feh! I don't like this guy one bit." Van started holding his side as he as tried to stand before falling over once more. "Kenji. I hope you're able to pull something off with this." Van fired another Mekura off from his tails.

As the blast flew towards Averian and struck his massive frame, Kenji stood still, blood dripping from his mouth and nose from when the tail had hit him. "Why don't you just die!? Seeping crest of turbidity, arrogant vessel of lunacy. Boil forth and deny, grow numb and flicker, disrupting sleep. Crawling queen of iron, eternally self-destructing doll of mud. Unite, repulse. Fill with soil and know your own powerlessness. Hado 90: Kurohitsugi!" The black coffin-like structure formed completely to envelop Averian before black energy skewered him from all possible angles. The exertion though, caused Kenji to fall face first to the floor. "Heh...hows that?"

Van looked over at the black coffin in horror as he watched Averian's massive body start to break free from his cage. "What is it going to take to put this guy away!?"

Averian's eyes shifted to Kenji "Was that it? It seems as you shinigami are as weak as you look!"

Kenji flashed beside Van, the extent of his wounds and the fact he'd used a lot of energy looked like they were catching up on him. "Heh. Even though things are lookin' pretty bad, I'm actually excited. I haven't had a fight this good since our last one."

Averian watched the two carefully, reverting to another new form. This time, he looked very similar to an octapus with eight large arms. "Shall I finish you now? You've both fought well, but, I require nourishment!" Raising his eight arms high, Averian charged a Cero in each one, laughing loudly and annoyingly in the process.

"Sandādoragon o Utsu!" It was Anna using one Kenji's abilities in order to distact Averian. "Sorry I'm late guys. Go for it now while's he's distracted!"

Kenji turned his head around instantly, a smile on his face as a vine sprouted from the ground, entangling both Kenji and Van with a second to ensnare Averian! "Don't struggle." Kenji said as the two were surrounded in a healing aura that restored some of their energy. "Thanks Kazuma! Van, it's time to put this guy down!" White spiritual energy swirled around Kenji's entire body. He wasn't holding back. Everything was being put into this next attack. "Gran Rey Cero." With an outstretched hand, Kenji formed the sphere and fired!

Van smiled as he felt re-energized. His eyes gained snake-like slits as he muttered "Reginleif." A red cylindrical sword started to manifest in his hands. "Its time for this to end Averian!" Van charged at his enemy behind Kenji's Gran Rey Cero. "Kami Masune!" A tear in space opened up creating an abyss-like area around Averian sucking in all that was around.

Kenji's fully powered Gran Rey Cero was sucked into the void, exploding afterward as the technique conjured by Van seemed to absorb the very sky itself. When the attack dissipated, Averian was bloodied from head-to-toe, his animal-like transformation broken, falling in a cloud of smoke. With a wave of his hand, he vanished into an opening Garganta that closed promptly behind him.

Kenji re-sealed Kyo's power and removed his mask, falling forward only to be caught by Kazuma who recharged some of his energy once again. "Van...we make a hell of a team, buddy." He ruffled Kazuma's hair, bowed his head to Anna in greeting and thanks before dropping to sit on the ground. "Van? You okay, pal? You still alive?" He asked with a fool grin.

"Still alive? I've never felt better. Today was certainly...eventful." Van laughed as his transformation vanished and Anna came up to hug him before punching him in the stomach

"YOU JERK! I was so worried about you!" Anna hugged Van with tears in her eyes before smiling at Kenji "Thanks for watching over him."

Kenji rose slowly before smiling. "Watch over him? I think he done his fair share of watchin' my back as well. Now, let's kick back and relax for a while, eh? I said I'd teach ya some swordsmanship...but wait until I can move. Kazuma, c'mere." He leaned on his pupil and nodded towards a nearby stone.

"Ino'll be over soon. We felt your battle from the shopping centre. You two really went wild!" Kazuma said with amazement. He set Kenji down on the rock and then ran over to Anna and Van. "I can restore some of your energy, but only Ino can heal the wounds. Sorry...but I haven't developed it that far yet. So, how ya been Anna?" He blushed the minute he looked at her as the vines sourrounded Van again.

Anna smiled at Kazuma as she punched Van in the ribs "Hey there cutie. I'm fine. Having to take care of this goofball and his friends are abit much sometimes but, needless to say I enjoy it to the fullest. So how have you been? Meet any atteactive girls you're interested in? If not maybe we'll find you someone. I have no problem helping you with that. <3"

Van looked over at Kenji giving a wave "Yo! You think we can have another match sometime? Who knows maybe I'll get even stronger by then." He chukled before Anna hit him in the throat to silence him.

Kazuma hung his head as though every dream he'd ever had was just cruelly crushed, but he livened up considerably quickly. "Well...there is one girl, but she's a human...and I don't know how to tell her I'm a Shinigami." He whimpered.

Kenji flinched when Anna struck Van and whisteled through his teeth before someone thumped him on top of the head! "Ouch! Ino!? What the hell was that for, eh?" He kissed her and she then dropped onto his lap carefully. "And of course we'll be havin' another match. And I hope you'll be stronger by then to! I know I will be." A devious smile crossed his face as he looked at Aoi Inazuma. "Shikai wasn't enough, and I'd rather not rely on Kyo's energy all the time. It's time to start takin' the first steps for my Bankai..."

Anna kissed Kazuma on the forehead "Don't worry just be yourself and tell her. Worst thing that could happen is she assumes you can vanish. But that will only happen if shes not spiritually aware. Or there's the much more dangerous process of shinigamification. But I don't want you to ever do that. Or you will get the same 'treatment' as Van does when he does something wrong."

Van stood slowly watching over the horizon "Whew! I could go for some pocky right about now." Van then stumbled foward realizing he hasn't gaines all of his strength back yet. "Ha! That's a faceplant if there ever was one." Van looked over at Kenji and Ino "Heh. Get a room you two! This is a battlefield"

Anna leaned over Van "What was that? Care to repeat it? Just because they can show their love without feeling uncomfortable like a certain crystal weilding freak I know!"

Kenji couldn't help but grin though. "Yeah Van, listen to Anna. Besides, this ain't a battlefield anymore. Big bad Arrancar's gone and to be perfectly honest, I wouldn't care if the entire Seireitei was watchin'." With that, he swept Ino closer and kissed her again.

Kazuma turned his head with embarrasment and rolled his eyes as he looked at Kenji and Ino. "There they go again...Ino! You're supposed to be healin' Van. Not plantin' one on Kenji." She nodded as she walked towards Van. "Sit still and it'll take no time at all..."

Anna kissed Van on the head as he groaned in embarassment. Van looked over at Ino as she came to heal him "Thanks. I really need it." Van closed his eyes to rest a bit

Anna sat next to Kazuma "So looks like you're a bit jealous of relationships. Such a kid after all." Anna laughed as she hugged Kazuma after seeing a bit of her little brother in him.

Kazuma screwed his face into a scowl, but it vanished as soon as Anna hugged him. His face went bright red after that and Kenji near fell off his rock laughing. "Ha! You shoulda seen your face!" He did fall off when Ino hurled a rock that hit him between the eyes. The sun was almost completely set when Ino finished healing everyone...

The Aftermath: Sword Training!Edit

As the night aproached Van walked over to Kenji to talk "Why don't we start that training in the morning after everyone's had more rest?"

Anna looked over at Van and Kenji before walking to speak to Ino. "Hey there!"

Kenji nooded and stretched his arms before yawning. "That's no problem, pal. We'll pick this up in the mornin'. Besides, I need to have a word with Aoi Inazuma anyway." He turned to face Kazuma. "Do me a favour and tell Kusaka where we'll be. I'll see ya later." Kazuma nooded before vanishing quickly, Kenji dropping to sit cross legged on the ground.

Ino smiled kindly as Anna aproached, sliding up the rock she was sitting on to make room. "Hey, we've seen each other before, but I don't think we've been properly introduced. I'm Ino Choyo."

Van smiled as he looked his zanpakuto No. Not time to focus on bankai just yet. He then went back to laying down before going to sleep.

"I'm Anna Rosenkrantz. It's a pleasure to formally meet you. I think us girls have to stick together in this mess of boys around here." Anna cracked a wide grin before leaning on Ino. "You know. Sometimes I think that I'm holding Van back. As if its my fault he's not as strong as he could be."

Kenji closed his eyes and looked like he was sleeping soundly. Jinzen did that, but he'd only need an hour or so to get the info he needed...

Ino luaghed at the statement. "I know! I travel with three and each one of 'em are like little boys! Kenji and Kusaka argue the toss. Kazuma seems to be the only calm one. But I don't think you're holding him back." She said in a whisper. "He was figthing side-by-side with Kenji against that Arrancar, so he isn't weak. And, as Kenji says, power isn't gained overnight."

"Yea?" Anna chuckled "Hm. Maybe. I could always beat the potential out of him if needed." She looked over ar Van "Well Ino. I think I'm going to get some sleep. See you tomorrow."

It wasn't long before the entire group were sleeping, and it wasn't long again when Kenji was awoken to the first gentle rays of sunlight and to a cloudless sky. Yawning and flicking sleep from his eyes, he cracked his knuckles and neck before doing some stretches. "...It's gonna be a good day." He whispered, Kazuma stirring to his right.

Van was awake near the lake practicing his sword swings when he looked over at Kenji "Yo. Morning!"

"Mornin'!" He called back, yawning halfway through. "I see someone's eager. Kazuma, where's Kusaka?" His neck let out a loud crack. "Ouch, that hurt."

The youngster leapt to his feet, a bouncing ball of energy as usual. "Picked up an urgent contract for some massive hollow. Said he'd take care of things come night time and sent me back." He ran over to Kenji, drawing his zanpakuto eagerly, performing several dance-like steps. "Sorry Van, Kenji doesn't exactly wake up all sunshine and roses."

Van looked over at Kazuma. "Hm? You were saying something. I tend to ignore anything that seems too lively in the morning. But Kenji. Why don't you take a dive in the lake? Its quite refreshing actually."

Anna was slowly starting to wake up "Van and his talking. Ugh!"

Ino awoke as well, squinting as the light hit her eyes. "How can they be so lively? I need sleep..."

"Don't worry, Van." Kazuma said quickly. "Kusaka ignores me in the mornin' as well." He went back to performing complicated sword strikes as though they were nothing.

Shrugging his shoulders, Kenji took off his blue kimono and leapt in head first! The surface broke a few seconds later with a noise very close to a shriek. "Refreshing!? It's bloodywell freezing!" But he didn't get out until he'd done a quick lap. "Now that ya mention it, that did wake me up...a lot."

"Heh. Oh did I forget to mention that part? My mistake. I thought everyone was familiar with the coldness of lake water. Guess that prank worked out a bit better than I expected. Well once everyone's fed and wide awake what do you say to getting to the training?" Van laughed

Kenji dried himself off with the old rag Ino tossed him over. "Heh. I'm famaliar with it now, that's for sure." He suddenly looked serious as he flashed to grab Aoi Inazuma and flashed back again. "Kyo's swordsmanship...Firstly, you need to be calm. Know how people tell ya to become one with your sword? Well, for this, they couldn't be more right. Calmness is key and probably why Kusaka doesn't use it much. First, calm your entire body."

Anna turned over to watch the process as it finally began

Van looked at Kenji "Calm huh? Ok." He started taking in deep breaths relaxing his muscles as he held his zanpakuto in his hands. "Just have to relax...."

Kenji nodded before looking at Kazuma. "Yo, kiddo! You're needed to dodge my attacks for a minute. Quite hittin' the air and get over here!" He turned to face Kazuma, but he spoke to Van. "I'll show you the moves for Kaze no appuru no hana first."

Kenji moved forward, moving from side-to-side as though dodging projectiles. As he closed on Kazuma, he batted the youngster's sword away once with a strike from the left and then clean out of his hand with a quick twist to the right, the final strike stopping just in front of Kazuma's chest. He performed the same move three more times before turning to Van. "Now it's your turn to try it on me. Just do as we showed you and stay calm."

Anna's eyes looked in awe of what she saw. She layed still in an attempt to contain her excitement.

Van stood as he walked toward Kenji. "Ok lets do this." Van shifted from side-to-side getting closer to Kenji with each step. He parried Kenji's blade before being knocked in the ribs by Kenji's hilt. "Crap! Not quite there yet. I need more speed it seems."

Kenji smirked before levelling Aoi Inazuma at Van. "Maybe you'll grasp it better if you're the one blockin' it. This was how I taught Kusaka them. Watch the movements first." He moved at a quick pace, but one that could easily be followed and began the first strike...

Van prepared himself for the strike blocking the first strike and stopping the the second but, not before being pushed back. "Tch. This technique is gonna be the death me if I miscalculate but I think I have the basics of it down."

Kazuma walked forward, two wooden practice swords in his hands. he tossed one to Kenji and another to Van. Testing the weight, Kenji looked at Van, a fool smile on his face. "Then it's time to practise until ya can do it without thinkin'. Come at me, and don't hold back!"

Van sneered as he surged at Kenji "Do I ever hold back?" Van swung his blade to the left of Kenji in attempt to catch him off guard.

And the angle of the strike froced Kenji's blade away, and Van's second strike in the opposite direction took it out of his hand. The third and final blow struck him in the chest and sent him trailing back a little. "See? You can do it." The two went through the steps a little more, until Van had the technique down.

"Now, it's onto Saidanodori. This next one is simple. You flash forward and swing your sword like a madman, but calmly," He added comically. "As quickly as you can to shred your enemy." He demonstarted the moves and landed just beside Kazuma. "See? Your turn."

"Swinging like a madman? That's my forte." Van chuckled as she started foward before stumbling seeing Anna already performing the move. "Anna?"

"Yea? Oh this? I figured if we're both here I might as well learn some new techniques as well. I have to get stronger so I can stay by your side you know." She chuckled as she repeated the move in front of everyone.

Kenji nodded his head and clapped. "Anna, you're able to do that after watching me do it only once or twice? Guess you're more like your zanpakuto than I thought...Okay! Kazuma, we've got two learners, so shape up before you fall behind! Ha, this days gonna be just as good as yesterday."

Anna smiled as she walked up to Van "Keep up hun. You don't want little ol' me to pass you up do you?"

Van blushing managed to get out "Tch. Whatever. Just don't get in my way. Got it?" He turned walking back toward his starting position

"Van...I was kidding." Anna sighed looking depressed before getting her stance ready for more training.

Kenji shook his head before grinning. "Ah, go easy on her, pal." He whispered, tapping Van lightly on the arm as he passed. "Kazuma, look alive! After Saidanodori, I gotta drum the rest into you both. And you're helpin'."

Kazuma leapt to his feet, excitement taking hold, and flashed to Anna's side. "Wow! I can't believe you managed to do so well just after seeing it! These things took me hours!" His tone was full of admiration. "Oh yeah, how's Jitsuzai?"

"Yeah, and my head was thumpin' by the end of it, remember?" Kenji retorted before performing the steps again.

Anna looked at Van as he stumbled trying to perform the necessary steps. "Oh Kazuma? For me its nothing more than simply muscle memory. I can just watch things happen and perform it easily. It tends to annoy Van but...yea well Jitsuzai is fine. He's off training with Shiro on focusing his powers more in preparation for 'something'"

Van smirked "Go easy? She's twice the warrior I am. I'm not going to admit that to her though. I have to become stronger in order to protect her. Until then I can't let my guard down and allow emotions to get in the way." Van followed the steps Kenji performed until he managed to get it down on his last attempt.

"And I wouldn't expect ya to, pal, but you'll manage." Kenji said calmly. "There's nothin' as worse as not bein' able to protect your allies. Trust me on that one, but I think it's time to cut the clouds. This move, you go as fast as you can and take their head off. Remember the one you barely dodged earlier?" He performed the movements for Kumo o setsudan. His practise sword moved in a flash towards Van's skull!

Kazuma smiled and nodded his head, performing the sword strikes slowly, but perfectly so Anna could easily see them. As he slashed, he spoke. "When you see him again, tell him for me that I'm training and looking forward to our next match. And this time, I won't be beaten so easily. Oh, and give him my bests as well." He added with a boyish grin.

"Yea it's the worst. But this move?" Van remembered his tactics earlier in an attempt to block this move. He moved the practice blade above his head tilting it to the side slightly to parry the sword and distribute the force as to not get pushed back from the blow.

"I will don't worry. I'm sure that he would enjoy a fight with you again. Better be careful though. Its almost time for his 'ban' to be lifted. hehehe." Anna laughed as she mimicked the movements of Kazuma. "You know...I wouldn't mind fighting Kusaka or Ino. More Ino though. I feel like she could be a dangerous opponent."

"You may wanna re-think that." Kazuma said shyly. "I mean, Ino's pretty strong. Her kido skills are enough to make Kenji look like an infant in comparrison and Kusaka's a damn powerhouse! But I think you'd do well against them. You've got good skills, afterall. Oh, I got a few new skills! Wanna see?" he was back to a child in no time.

Kenji's sword was parried aside, Van's practise blade cracking him in the ribs before he managed to leap back. "Now that was nice! You've got the movements down nice, so c'mon! Show me what you've got, Van!"

"Bring it on!" Anna laughed as she motioned toward Kazuma "And I'll be happy to take either of them on."

"GRRRAH!" Van charged at Kenji. His blade connected with Kenji's legs throwing him off balance but Kenji flipped back shunpoing foward at Van in a shoulder tackle "Not bad Kenji."

Kenji bounced on the spot before launching into a quick Shunpo that took him behind Van. "This one's Furaito o torimasu davu. Don't misjudge, Van." He brought his blade down, Van turning to block it quickly, but Kenji's foot caught him lightly in the ribs. "That ones a feint. The first strike is actually the trap. The second strike is the fatal one. And remember. How many people know these skills? Not many. That leaves it even harder to dodge."

Kazuma formed a large blade of earth and sent it flying into a tree! "I've finally learned how to fire them off at will! Chiikioi's been pushin' my limits ever since our last meeting." He performed another series of movements so Anna could copy them. "And I'll pass on the message...but Kusaka's been different lately. I don't know what's up with him, but something's wrong."

Anna started to chuckle "Aww. Has he finally started hitting puberty?" She gained a serious look on her face. "I'm sorry. That was just too easy to pass up on. What do you mean diffirent though?" Anna spoke as she launched an earthern blade into the sky.

"Kenji. I must thank you greatly for everything you've done for us." Van bowed before charging at Kenji using shunpo to cause him to flip and spin rapidly towards Kenji's head. He then turned to kick but, the force behind him was too great and he went crashing into a tree. "Heh. There goes my cool moment. hahahaha"

Kazuma suddenly stopped, his face grim seriousness. "I don't know. Even Kenji's worried about him. He's been distant ever since...he fought Screamer. He's an Arrancar and a pretty powerful one at that. Not as strong as that Averian guy...but close. And then there's Amukaz as well..."

Kenji shook his head and stopped training, extending his hand out towards Van. “Hey, what are friends for? And I should really be thankin’ you. If you hadn’t of come walkin’ up that road when ya did, Averian woulda slaughtered me before Kazuma got here. I need to get stronger. And I know just the way.” He looked over at Kazuma and Anna training and grinned. “Shikai isn’t enough, Van, and I see that now. I’m gonna start pushin’ for my Bankai.”

"Amukaz? Another arrancar? Wow. You guys sure know how to make some enemies." Anna chuckled

"Bankai?" Van spoke as he took Kenji's hand to stand. "Averian was one tough cookie. I think I need to get stronger as well but, I don't think I'm able to acheive bankai just yet. I have another trick as you saw but, I don't think it'll be enough in the future. I'm still getting used to the powers so I'm still discovering things about it."

Kazuma shook his head, a grin on his face. "It's all Kenji and Kusaka. Those two are like hollow and Arrancar magnets! But Amukaz is a Vizard like Kenji and Van, and pretty strong at that. We're thinkin' these guys all had some connection to the Arrancar Kenji fried back in Soul Society, and that he was only the tip of the iceberg."

"Yeah, I'm lookin' to learn my Bankai. So far, I've been able to fight these powerful guys because of Kyo...but without him, I'd get swamped big time." He stretched his arms and looked to the heavens. "Bankai is the pinacle of Shinigami strength. I've seen how powerful it can make you, and against Averian, I need every edge. He seem's like the kind to hold a grudge and we definitely gave him a reason to hold one yesterday. He'll be back, you can count on it. Make sure you watch your back, Van."

"A vizard then? he has a zanpakuto I can taste?" Anna began drooling slightly "Ah. oh well. I guess I can always wait to run into him maybe. But maybe if I travel following Kusaka as I fight him we'll run into him."

"I understand you completely my friend. Hell even more than you think. You have met him yet but, my brother Shiro reached bankai....I know the power it holds behind it." Van started to look at his own zanpakuto "But another word of don't need it. You have Kyo and your allies. I'm sure things will work out for the best. Don't try to force it. If needed we can always make you into something like me. Though the process is quite dangerous. But if what you say is true about Averian. It'll be another edge you can use in your arsenal."

Kenji nodded his head, eyes still fixated on the skies. "Naw, I need it, Van. Averian didn't even release his Resurrección against us. We've only scratched the surface of his power...and the way he went on about his zanpakuto troubled me. I could feel it when I clashed blades with him. That blade is dangerous. I could feel it trying, wanting to devour us." He sighed before turning to look at Van. "Sometimes, It's a real pain being the strongest member of the group. It means you need to protect the others and give them the time and protection needed to grow. Right now, Kusaka could fight Averian, but Kazuma and Ino aren't ready for that battle yet. Bankai's the only road left for me to take."

Kazuma laughed though. "This Amukaz guy seems to have more of a bone to pick with me for some reason. It's only Kusaka and Kenji Screamer hates. And yes, but we don't know what his zanpakuto is. He only used his hollow powers against us." A small sphere of water formed in his hand and spun continually. "Water's so relaxing...don't ya think?"

"Yea. Now that you mention it. He didn't relase did he? I had to go almost all out just to cause him to retreat. Wow. That's not good Kenji. Not good at all." Van started to smile "Well...if you need source to get stronger from. There's this tournament approaching. I think it'll be good for eveyone who wants to improve their combat abilities. By the time this thing is over I'm sure you'll be closer to getting bankai if you haven't by then. Its a good ways away but still."

Anna looked at Kazuma "Really? Hollow powers? Another vizard? I'm sure Jitsuzai would want to fight with him." She sat down near him on a rock."But water huh?" Anna started forming her own ball of water from Medy's powers. "It can be relaxing but, It can also lead to a horrible death."

That statement caught Kenji's attention. "A tournament, eh? That might just be worth headin' back to Soul Society and tellin' good ol' Yoshiro about. I take it your competin', then?" He done a few squats, excitement at a possible fight with Van again takin' hold. "And now you've given me another reason to get stronger, Van. Come tournament time, I don't care if we aren't drew against each other, we'll be fightin' each other. I've seen that new power of yours and I'm curious to see the full extent of it."

Kazuma allowed the sphere of water to fade away before smiling. "Everything can cause a painful death, when ya think about it. It all boils down to user in my book." He replied calmly. "What about you, Anna? Anything you find relaxing?"

Van looked confused. "Yoshiro? Another strong opponent?" He gained a smile on his face. "And we can always fight Kenji. Just let me know when and where and I'll be there. I would love to throw down with you. Just between me and you. I think my zanpakuto is starting to vanish. Its getting harder and harder fo me to leave the transformed state. Don't tell the others. I don't want anyone worrying."

Anna smiled at Kazuma. "Relaxing? That's simple. I love the feeling that surges through me as I get a new ability for my collection. It feels as if I'm always getting stronger. Maybe a little too strong and that's why Van thinks he has to protect me from others."

Kenji arched an eyebrow, but finally shook his head with a large, goofy grin. "It's not as if your zanpakuto will just disappear, Van. It's linked to your soul, as much as Aoi Inazuma is to mine. You may lose touch with it, but it'll always be a part of ya. It's the same thing with Kyo. When I use his power, I can access abilities I couldn't before. I think those are the remnants of his own zanpakuto. But don't worry, pal. My lips are sealed."

Kazuma moved towards Anna and stood still. "Then slice my aura. I've got a few new skills...and I don't wanna see you get hurt." He said the last so quietly, he doubted she even heard him. "There's a healing one there, so look after the others, okay?" His cheeks were on fire as he spoke.

"Yea?" Van fell over in laughter. "Enough of this depressing talk. I'll learn to deal with that when the time comes. But for now I again must thank you for the training." Van stood back bowing to Kenji before laughing again "Man. I'm itching to fight you again. But I guess we have to save that for a later day huh?."

"My. You know? You really are a sweet young man. Whoever you end up with can't possibly deserve you." Anna spoke as she walked over to Kazuma's forehead giving him a kiss while unsealing her zanpakuto in order to take more of his abilities. "Thanks Kazuma. I'm sure your abilities will come in handy."

"I hear ya, Van and don't worry about it. Next time we fight, we'll need to find a secluded spot, or I know what's gonna happen." He looked over at Kazuma and nearly laughed as the youngster's cheeks went scarlet! "Ya know, his face couldn't get any redder if I went up and pinched it. I guess we'll catch later, then? I gotta go and knock Kusaka outta his depression. Let's just say he got a bit of a hammering when he fought an Arrancar and a Vizard."

Kazuma lowered his head to avoid her seeing him blush before soaking his face with water. "Ah, that's refreshing! I was gettin' a little hot there. Whew." He could hear Kenji and Van laughing at him, but he didn't really care.

Van laughed as he watched Anna plant one on Kazuma. "Yea. We really need a better spot. otherwise someone may die. lol. I guess this is it until we next meet up." Van patted Kenji on the shoulder. "Don't worry I'll take it easy on you next time. I may be a little different but, it may cause you to die from the shock alone. haha"

"Aww. Do you want another?" Anna chuckled as she started making a kissing motion toward Kazuma "I can do this all day."

Kenji returned the gesture and gave a two-fingered salute as he walked towards Kazuma. "Remember Van, next time, no holding back, eh?" He caught the youngster by the back of his kimono and dragged him off. "Sorry to interupt your moment here, but we shoukd get goin'. Van, Anna, look after yourselves. And remember, you ever need help, I'm not a hard guy to find. Just look for the nearest and largest explosion. I'm sure I'll be close by." He joked before flashing into the sky.

Kazuma threw out his arms, trying to struggle against Kenji's vice-like grip. "No, no, let me go! I'm gonna get another kiss! No! Noooooo!" He vanished alongside Kenji...

Van and Anna laughed as she blew a kiss to Kazuma "Well Van. You want to get moving? Van?"

Van was holdin his side on the ground. "Damn zanpakuto." Glad you left man. Can't have you seeing me like this.

Next Story > Achievement of Power: Kusaka's Side-Story!

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